India, That Is Bharat, the first book of a comprehensive trilogy, explores the influence of European 'colonial consciousness' (or 'coloniality'), in particular its religious and racial roots, on Bharat as the successor state to the Indic civilisation and the origins of the Indian Constitution. It lays the foundation for its sequels by covering the period between the Age of Discovery, marked by Christopher Columbus' expedition in 1492, and the reshaping of Bharat through a British-made constitution-the Government of India Act of 1919. This includes international developments leading to the founding of the League of Nations by Western powers that tangibly impacted this journey.
Further, this work also traces the origins of seemingly universal constructs such as 'toleration', 'secularism' and 'humanism' to Christian political theology. Their subsequent role in subverting the indigenous Indic consciousness through a secularised and universalised Reformation, that is, constitutionalism, is examined. It also puts forth the concept of Middle Eastern coloniality, which preceded its European variant and allies with it in the context of Bharat to advance their shared antipathy towards the Indic worldview. In order to liberate Bharat's distinctive indigeneity, 'decoloniality' is presented as a civilisational imperative in the spheres of nature, religion, culture, history, education, language and, crucially, in the realm of constitutionalism.
Sai Deepak builds a strong decolonial argument disengaging from modern Western orthodoxy of the either/or, and proposes instead the decolonial logic of neither/nor. He does it by means of a detailed and careful reconstitution of knowledges, ways of knowing and patterns of sensing that were destituted and continue to be so in the name of progress, democracy and economic development, all under the mantra that more is better. ― Walter D. Mignolo William Hane Wannamaker Distinguished Professor of Romance Studies, Duke University, USA
J. Sai Deepak has begun something here that needs serious attention. It also suggests that significant support is required to develop its proposals further in directions not yet explored. I hope the book will be read and debated widely, especially in and for the sake of the 'India that is Bharat'. ― Dr. Prakash Shah Reader in Culture and Law, Queen Mary, University of London
Through this magisterial trilogy, advocate and scholar J. Sai Deepak successfully fills a huge vacuum in the corpus of decolonial scholarship from a uniquely empathetic Indian perspective. In a masterful manner, Sai Deepak traces the global history of colonialism, India's unfortunate tryst with it and, importantly, inquires its impact on the emergence of a colonial consciousness. A must-read tribute to the Indic civilisation for anyone serious about understanding the pernicious trajectory of invasive colonialism and the lingering colonial consciousness in the 'independent' Indian (or should we term this as he does, Bharateeya) mind, and how to consciously work towards reversing it. ― Dr. Vikram Sampath Historian, Author and Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at Monash University
Advocate J. Sai Deepak has provided India with a milestone: a step from superficial to integral decolonization. Few combine the vision of a civilisational liberation, easy to invoke in malleable cultural respects, with the exacting juridical knowledge needed for a precise and workable paradigm shift deconstructing this lingering submission. ― Dr. Koenraad Elst Scholar and Author of Decolonizing the Hindu Mind
The wealth of evidence the author marshals in support of his arguments is truly impressive and reflects the rigour of his study. I have no doubt that India that is Bharat will be a welcome addition to the nascent corpus of literature in this specialist field. That it has emerged from India is a bonus.I wish the book and its author all the success in getting the recognition it deserves. ― Sandeep Balakrishna Scholar and Author of Invaders and Infidels
The book is a must-read for everyone who is interested in understanding the relationship between the consciousness of the world's oldest surviving indigenous civilisation and the Constitution of the world's largest democracy. ― Prof. Lavanya Vemsani Professor of History, Shawnee State University, and Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Indic Studies
India, That Is Bharat examines, through a decolonial lens, if Bharat's constitutional journey is informed by European 'coloniality', which affects its relationship with the Indic civilisational worldview.
About the Author
J. Sai Deepak is an engineer-turned-litigator, practising as an arguing counsel primarily before the Supreme Court of India and the High Court of Delhi. A mechanical engineer from Anna University, he graduated with a bachelor's degree in law from IIT Kharagpur's Law School in 2009, and has carved a niche for himself as a litigator in civil commercial and constitutional matters. Over the years, he has been part of several landmark matters, such as the ones relating to the Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple, the Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple and Basmati Geographical Indications. In 2019, he was awarded the Young Alumni Achiever's Award by his alma mater IIT Kharagpur. Apart from delivering lectures on constitutional issues, he is a prolific writer for leading newspapers and magazines.